Dear Sunday Letter friends,
Hallelujah! I think a gorgeous fall may be unfolding here in the Ozarks. It seems a safe prediction based on the leaves in the picture above. I took this picture three days ago in our neighborhood. I don’t know why the sight of turning leaves thrills me, but it does.
The first thing I do to welcome a new season is to switch out my front door wreath. I did that this week, but I’ve not bought any pumpkins yet. Some of my neighbors started really early this year, stacking pumpkins on their porches two or three weeks ago. Anything to move on through 2020? I think that must be the consensus.
Bottom line=> Fall is here and these cooler days feel like blessed salvation to me.
Doe, a Deer
Something else I’ve noticed about this year—I’m pretty sure if we accidentally left our back screen door open, the deer would claim the back porch as their new home. Our back yard isn’t all that large, and in years before, the deer have avoided the fenced-in area.
Not any more. The rules no longer apply anywhere about anything it seems.
This doe enjoyed salvia for breakfast on Thursday morning. And her friend was waiting behind the garage.
Is it just me or has every day this entire year been a page ripped from The Far Side calendar?
Arlene: Oh for goodness sakes, there she is again, always taking our picture.
Teddy: She must be one of those social media stalkers we’ve been warned about.
You never know where a monarch might decide to transform, but it’s usually only a few feet from its milkweed food source. I noticed a chrysalis this week attached near the tip of a dried stem of Liatris. I’m so glad I didn’t deadhead this plant.
Here’s the Liatris in July. Such a beautiful bloomer and butterfly magnet.
Here’s the chrysalis attached to it now. Evidently the butterfly monarchs love it even when the blooms have faded. There’s a lesson there, y’all. Maybe more than one.
I imagine the plant (or stone wall or patio chair or screen window) chosen to support a monarch chrysalis during such a miraculous transformation must feel it has been paid the ultimate compliment.
90 Days Gone
Y’all, it has been over 90 days since Lucy passed away. This was the last picture I took of Annabelle and Lucy together (May 2020).
We sure miss our sweet little girl.
People ask us how Annabelle is doing, and for the most part she seems to be okay. I’m sure she is enjoying all the extra attention and long walks. But there are times when we suspect she misses her best friend the way we do.
A few days ago, I found her lying in the mulch at Lucy’s grave. It’s the first time she’s paid any attention to that area of the backyard. (Lucy is buried beneath the stones—we still haven’t found a proper marker for her.) Annabelle stayed there for some time. And I was reminded of the saddest book EVER—Where the Red Fern Grows.
I think Annabelle may have been telling secrets to Lucy.
Did you know they are talking about getting a puppy? I don’t know how to feel about that. How should I feel about that. What do you think, Lucy? Will I be in charge of her? Hmmm? I’ll keep you posted.
Yesterday, I thoroughly enjoyed watching college football for an entire afternoon (Arkansas) and evening (Baylor). It’s not just the game, it’s the tradition of it. John made his first pot of chili of the season. We had the requisite dips and chips and fixins for frito pies. Momma, my sister, and my sister-in-law joined us.
Life felt pretty normal the entire day/night. And normal was not only appreciated, but it was very much needed.
Time will tell if Saturday football will continue. I sure hope so. But realistically, college campuses and coronavirus sure cozied up quickly. And sometimes those quick relationships don’t last.
Things Momma Says
Well….watching this game is like watching a car rust.
Something I’ve been thinking about lately… I’ve spent way too much time moaning about how crazy 2020 has been, whining about events that have been cancelled and the places I’ve not gone, writing off the bulk of the year as though it has been completely lost to coronavirus. But that’s not true. Good things have happened this year too.
I’m not going to let the remainder of the year be thrown away. I’m going to do my best to enjoy the last quarter of the year. Even though it won’t look like prior fall seasons, there are still a world of simple joys to be discovered every day.
I plan to focus on those things.
Join me if you’d like.
Grace Grits and Gardening
Farm. Food. Garden. Life.